Spring is the perfect time of year to clean up your thoughts! One way to do this is to recognize and release your negative thought loops. We offer five of the most dubious negative thought loops to let go of this spring.
You may think that judging others makes you feel good, but it causes great pain. Why? Because you have no control over what others do. It can leave you feeling anxious and depleted when you are constantly in a mind loop of "she should've done this" or "he should've done that."
Letting go of what others should or shouldn't do will bring you instant relief.
Have you ever thought that "people-pleasing" is just another way of trying to control others? Or, at the very least, trying to control outcomes? It's exhausting. It's exhausting because, as already mentioned, you cannot control other people.
Many of us (especially women) learned from our parents (and society) to be "pleasing," "make people feel comfortable," "mind your manners," etc. These things can be good to a certain extent. But do these things because it makes YOU feel good. Try not to invest in how the other person reacts; that's on them.
You will feel empowered when you let that people-pleasing mindset go! Try it!
Seeking Affirmation from Others
We all fall prey to this thought loop. We want others to see the good in us, root for us, praise us, and validate our feelings. Affirmation is something children need from their parents. But as adults, affirmation is an "inside" job.
Relying on others for constant reassurance and validation is frustrating for you and exhausting for the other person.
There's a saying, "you can never get enough of what you don't need." Even when someone validates you, that good feeling you experienced typically lasts briefly and leaves you longing for more. The constant need for affirmation can be insatiable.
When you self affirm, and self validate, you will feel better because you are now in control. In addition, your relationships will improve because you are no longer making other people responsible for your emotional well-being.
Perfectionism is indeed the enemy of greatness. But unfortunately, it's also a thought loop that immediately produces negative thoughts that contribute to a negative self-image.
Brene Brown observes that perfectionism is an avoidance tactic to keep us from feeling uncomfortable when learning a new skill. However, by definition, learning something new is UNCOMFORTABLE! Failing is a part of the process!
You cannot wait for something to be perfect before taking action. Greatness comes in the act of doing the "thing." True power comes from releasing any notion that you or it must be perfect.
Beating Yourself Up
This one may be the most important of the five thought loops to let go of this spring. In our February blog post, 5 Ways to Show Yourself Love, we talked about speaking to yourself kindly. But it bears repeating.
Your inner dialogue is powerful. You cannot beat yourself up or hate yourself into "being" or "doing" better. Speaking to yourself this way will leave you feeling depleted and defeated. So talk to yourself as you would someone you love.
Identifying and releasing these thought loops can be a meaningful and actionable way to make positive change. We hope we've given you something to think about and something that helps you achieve the life you dream of. We love to see you thrive!